Myths and Facts of Acne

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Acne is the term for plugged skin pores, caused by an oily substance called sebum, produced by our skin. The bacteria in the plug causes swelling, then when the plug starts to break down, a pimple grows. There are many types of pimples. The most common types are: Whiteheads, blackheads, papules, pustules, nodules and cysts. It occurs generally on the face, neck, chest, back, shoulders and even the upper arms. It is not a life threatening condition, but can be demoralizing and if neglected, it can lead to permanent scarring.

There are many myths about the cause of acne saying that dirty skin, stress, chocolates and greasy foods cause acne in most people. However, there is no proven fact to any of these myths. So washing your face numerous times in one day or avoiding some particular food will not help in treating or reducing acne.

Many people feel that sunlight helps in treating their acne but the ultraviolet rays in sunlight increases the risk of skin cancer and early aging of the skin.

Generally teenagers aged between 14 and 25 get acne. In some cases people in their forties and fifties also get acne. There are many reasons which cause acne; the following are just a few examples:

–       the hormones which effect the sebaceous glands, known as androgens, present in both males and females. In addition, a normal skin bacteria called P. acnes, begins to multiply rapidly in the clogged hair follicle.

–       Heredity

–       Some specific medicine which has stimulated the hormonal secretion.

–       Greasy make-up.

You should not try to treat your acne by yourself without having a complete knowledge of the root cause of your particular problem. A dermatologist is the best person who can suggest a way to get rid of your problem, but there are some precautionary measures which you can take to help your acne:

–       clean your skin gently with a mild cleanser twice a day (without scrubbing).

–       Stay out of the sun.

–       Do not touch or squeeze your pimple.

–       Avoid using greasy make-up.

Use powder based make-up which states that it is “noncomedogenic” on the label.

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